Democrats are considering reintroducing a gun control measure that would expose firearm businesses to frivolous lawsuits originating from criminal misuse of their products.
Rep. Jason Crow (D – CO-6) talked about reintroducing the Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act during a virtual conference on Thursday.
The proposal would repeal the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA). The law shields firearm and ammunition manufacturers, importers, sellers, dealers, and trade associations from lawsuits associated with unlawful third-party actions that they have no control over.
Joe Biden falsely claimed that “the only industry in America - a billion-dollar industry – that can’t be sued – has exempt from being sued – are gun manufacturers.”
Several fact-checkers, including CNN, categorized Biden’s remarks as FALSE. CNN’s fact-checkers noted that firearm manufacturers can be held responsible for various reasons including negligence, product defects, and breach of contract.
Thus, gunmakers cannot sell firearms to criminals or evade various gun laws without consequences as Biden and other gun control activists allege.
The law only gives firearm businesses the necessary protection from people trying to abuse the court system to disrupt the firearm business through frivolous lawsuits.
Suing gunmakers for shootings is similar to suing automakers for accidents caused by drunken drivers.
“I am home to some of the nation’s most horrific shootings, from Columbine to the Aurora theater shooting to STEM School and others,” Crow said. “When I talk to those families, when I talk to the victims and survivors, they have no recourse, they have no avenues to go to, these companies, these manufacturers these ammo dealers who are negligent.”
The Supreme court allowed families of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting victims to sue Remington Arms Company. They alleged that the company engaged in “deceptive marketing practices” that described the rifle used in the shooting as a military weapon to “court high-risk users.”
While such lawsuits are unlikely to succeed, they would lead to increased operational costs in legal fees and falling stock prices. Thus, they would bankrupt the firearm businesses while doing nothing to prevent mass shootings.
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